Let’s face it, in this day in age, it is EXTREMELY hard to slow down. With social media, Netflix, and notifications clogging up our minds (and timelines), most days it feels nearly impossible to sit in silence without checking our phones.
So when Reve En Vert reached out to me to do a book review for them that focused on the themes less is more, and the art of slowing down. I thought to myself, ah yes, this will be a challenge for me. Let’s do it!
For my review, I chose one of my favorites, Daily Rituals by Mason Currey. I picked this book because I find it so very fascinating to explore the daily rituals of some of my favorite writers and artists.
“Time is short, my strength is limited, the office is a horror, the apartment is noisy, and if a pleasant, straightforward life is not possible then one must try to wriggle through by subtle maneuvers.” – Franz Kafka
All of the makers in this book have one thing in common: each artist has found that one thing (or a combination of things) that make their day worthwhile and more productive. All of these artists have zeroed in on what’s important and somehow eliminated most of their distractions.
Reading through all of these artists daily rituals inspired me to put a list together of the ones that really resonated with me. My thought is to take inspiration from these and incorporate them into what will hopefully become a daily ritual of my own!
Rise early • Ernest Hemingway
“When I am working on a book or a story I write every morning as soon after first light as possible. There is no one to disturb you and it is cool or cold and you come to your work and warm as you write.” -Ernest Hemmingway
Waking up just 20 minutes earlier than your alarm can make a huge difference. It eliminates the need to rush and if you make it 30 minutes, you’ll have time to sneak a chapter of that book you’ve been obsessing over before work!
Coffee in the morning • Beethoven
Beethoven’s coffee was such a precise ritual, he actually counted out his beans (60) before grinding them into his morning cup of joe.
While I’m definitely not that particular about my coffee, there is something to be said about sitting and having coffee while doing nothing else. When’s the last time you just let yourself be? No distractions, no TV buzzing in the background. Just your coffee (or tea), and you. Take that time to think, meditate and clear your mind before the day gets crazy.
It’s OK to say no sometimes • Toni Morrison
“I avoid social life normally associated with publishing. I don’t go to the cocktail parties, I don’t give or go to dinner parties. I need that time in the evening because I can do a tremendous amount of work then. I can concentrate.” -Toni Morrison
If you need to take some time for yourself in order to create, it’s ok to say no. No guilt, no shame. No one else is going to be able to write what you write or paint what you paint. Only you can do that.
Social media quiet hours
My colleagues and I were recently talking about how hard it is to set our phones aside while we’re doing other things. We thought how nice would it be to have social media quiet hours. At least an hour (or more) before bed, we’re not allowed to check our phones. I tried it last night and it was SO hard but so rewarding. I think I’ll try the same for when I wake up as well.
Do you have any tips on slowing down? If so, share this post and comment what you think would make a good daily ritual! I’d love to hear your thoughts!